olly olly oxen free

A phrase used to indicate that it is OK to come home or to a home base. It is commonly used in children's games. All the kids ran back to the starting point when Brian yelled, "Olly olly oxen free!"
See also: free, olly, oxen
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2022 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

All-y all-y oxen free!

It's safe to return home. This hide-and-seek and kick-the-can game catchphrase assures players that they can return to the starting point without penalty. Generations of mothers summoned children home to supper by standing on the porch and yelling the phrase.
See also: oxen
Endangered Phrases by Steven D. Price Copyright © 2011 by Steven D. Price
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